Learning to Be Latino: How Colleges Shape Identity Politics
Rutgers University Press
In Learning to Be Latino, sociologist Daisy Verduzco Reyes paints a vivid picture of Latino student life at a liberal arts college, a research university, and a regional public university, outlining students’ interactions with one another, with non-Latino peers, and with faculty, administrators, and the outside community. Reyes identifies the normative institutional arrangements that shape the social relationships relevant to Latino students’ lives, including school size, the demographic profile of the student body, residential arrangements, the relationship between students and administrators, and how well diversity programs integrate students through cultural centers and retention centers. Together these characteristics create an environment for Latino students that influences how they interact, identify, and come to understand their place on campus.
Drawing on extensive ethnographic observations, Reyes shows how college campuses shape much more than students’ academic and occupational trajectories; they mold students’ ideas about inequality and opportunity in America, their identities, and even how they intend to practice politics.